After Testing a Mountain of Vegan Chocolates, Our Editors Can Definitively Say That These Are the 10 Best-Tasting Brands

Photo: Stocksy/Susan Brooks-Dammann

Vegan chocolate, like other vegan products, is completely free from animal products. While cocoa is naturally plant-based (it's derived from cocoa beans from the cacao tree), its vegan roots are not often maintained throughout the bean-to-bar process (aka one of the biggest distinctions between dark chocolate vs. milk chocolate). In fact, many chocolatiers incorporate animal products, particularly milk and/or milk powder, for both flavor and mouthfeel.

But dairy is by no means necessary for creating a truly delicious chocolate bar. In fact, you may be surprised to find that some of your favorite brands of chocolate are already vegan desserts. Seriously: Many dark chocolates that have a cacao content of 70 percent or greater are, by default, vegan-friendly and packed with antioxidants. So before you even ask, know that vegan chocolate is one hundred percent worthy of keeping in your cabinet, on your nightstand, and just about everywhere else in your house at all times. When you get your hands on the good stuff, we guarantee you won't miss (or for that matter, notice) the lack of dairy in your bar, truffle, or peanut butter cup.

That being said, not all plant-based chocolates are created equal. That's why we bought up pretty much every brand and bar on the market and tasted them (tough job, but someone had to do it) to find the best plant-based choco products money can buy. Read to dig in?

The 10 best vegan chocolate brands (in no particular order)

Hu Dark Chocolate Bars (6 pack) — $39.00

Hu has an entire selection of healthy chocolate snacks and treats, but the vegan dark chocolate is a perennial crowd pleaser. Not only are these rich chocolates dairy-free, but they’re also gluten-free, refined sugar-free, and soy lecithin-free (which is often found in other vegan bars). Be sure to check out the hazelnut butter variety, which tastes so rich and creamy.

Available flavors: almond crunch, hazelnut coffee, salty, cashew butter + vanilla bean, hazelnut butter, simple, cashew butter + raspberry, almond butter + puffed quinoa, crunchy mint, vanilla crunch, cashew butter + orange vanilla, dark chocolate variety pack.

Product attributes: vegan, paleo, kosher, non-GMO, gluten-free, organic

Cacao percentage: 70 percent

unreal vegan chocolate
UNREAL Dark Chocolate Covered Peanut Gems (12 pack) — $25.00

Childhood nostalgia meets grown-up sensibilities with UNREAL’s organic, dairy-free, and gluten-free chocolate treats. The dark chocolate peanut gems are a particular favorite, and made with non-GMO project verified ingredients. While they still have that telltale colorful candy coating, the hues come from vegetable extracts rather than artificial chemicals.

Available flavors: crispy quinoa gems, milk chocolate gems (not vegan)

Product attributes: vegan, non-GMO, no artificial coloring, no sugar alcohols, fair trade ingredients, no soy ingredients

chocoloney dark chocolate
Photo: Tony's Chocoloney
Tony’s Chocoloney Dark Chocolate Bundle (6 pack) — $30.00

Another delicious lineup of Fair Trade chocolate bars come from Tony’s Chocoloney. All dark chocolate varieties from the brand (except for the dark milk pretzel toffee flavor) are vegan, but we’re particularly partial to the dark pecan coconut—the perfect balance of rich, creamy, and coconutty. Plus, Tony’s is a strong proponent of ethical sourcing and chocolate sustainability, and is on a mission to achieve 100 percent slave-free chocolate across the world.

Available flavors: dark chocolate, dark chocolate almond sea salt, dark chocolate pretzel toffee

Product attributes: fair trade, B Corp certified, no artificial ingredients

Cacao percentage: 70 percent

Green & Black's Organic Dark Chocolate Bar (10 pack) — $39.00

Ethically-sourced chocolate is the heart and soul of Green & Black’s, and it just so happens that most of the brand’s dark chocolates are vegan. The organic hazelnut and currant dark chocolate bar is especially swoon-worthy, as is the mint chocolate bar infused with peppermint oil. Green & Black does produce its dark chocolates on the same machinery that handles dairy, so again, if you have an allergy, proceed with caution.

Available flavors: 70 percent

Product attributes: USDA organic, non-GMO

Cacao percentage: 85 percent

barnana chocolate
Photo: Barnana
Barnana Organic Chewy Banana Bites (12 Pack) — $32.00

Barnana chocolate is chocolate for folks who really, really love to eat fun-filled chocolate snacks. A little sweet, a little chewy, these dark chocolate-coated banana bites are deliciously good. The product is also non-GMO, USDA-certified organic, and made from upcycled ingredients.

Available flavors: coconut, peanut butter (non-vegan)

Product attributes: USDA organic, kosher, gluten-free

Justin's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups (12 pack) — $36.00

If you’re looking for a vegan take on the classic peanut butter cup, look no further than Justin’s. There’s a whole lot of peanut butter surrounded by a luxurious coating of dark chocolate, and better still, it’s vegan. Keep in mind that the milk chocolate variety is not animal product-free.

Available flavors: dark chocolate almond butter cups

Product attributes: USDA organic, kosher

Alter Eco Quinoa Crunch Bars — $11.00

We love the entire lineup of organic, non-GMO, and Fair Trade-certified chocolates from Alter Eco, but the dark quinoa bar is a particular standout. Not only is it vegan, but it brings a necessary crunch element to your traditional vegan chocolate bar with the addition of puffed quinoa. And did you know that chocolate and sex go hand in hand (if you’re into that, anyway)? Indeed, chocolate has key compounds in it that are precursors for dopamine and also serotonin (aka, it’s one way to really set the mood).

Available flavors: brown butter, super blackout, total blackout

Product attributes: USDA organic, gluten-free

Cacao percentage: 60 percent

Vosges Vegan Truffle Collection
Photo: Vosges Haut-Chocolat
Vosges Vegan Truffle Collection — $15.00

Is there a vegan milk chocolate? Yep, look no further than Vosges, which is now offering an entire vegan collection. From vegan truffles to vegan chocolate bars, Vosges uses cacao, coconut oil, and sea salt as the base of many of their vegan offerings. We love the green tea matcha variety in particular, and would also encourage you to check out the gluten-free chocolate lineup as well as their incredibly creamy truffle collection.

Available flavors: forest raspberry rose, Sicilian blood orange

Product attributes: vegan, woman-owned

Cacao percentage: 72 percent

Lily's Extremely Dark Chocolate Bars (12 pack) — $40.00

Lily’s makes a wide range of baking and snacking chocolates, and the dark chocolate bars are sweetened with Stevia and without any dairy. Plus, a portion of all profits benefit children with cancer, an homage to the namesake of the brand who battled brain cancer. While Lily’s Extra Dark Chocolate Bars (70% Extra Dark Chocolate Bars, 85% Extremely Dark Chocolate Bar, 92% Intensely Dark Chocolate Bar), Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups, 55% Dark Chocolate Baking Chips, 55% Dark Chocolate Keto Baking Chips, and 58% Dark Chocolate Baking Bars do not contain animal products, they are produced on equipment that also processes dairy-containing chocolates, which means that if you’re avoiding dairy because of an allergy, you’ll want to proceed with caution.

Available flavors: intensely dark, extra dark, almond dark chocolate

Product attributes: gluten-free, no sugar added

Cacao percentage: 85 percent

ritter sport salted caramel best vegan chocolate
Photo: Ritter Sport
Ritter Sport Vegan Salted Caramel Chocolate Bar — $13.00

It’s hard not to love the eminently snackable little squares from the German chocolatier, and even more so given their equally-delicious vegan lineup. Sure, there’s a whole section on their website now dedicated to vegan products, but keep in mind that the dark chocolate and marzipan options are also naturally dairy-free.

Available flavors: mild classic, crunchy hazelnut

Product attributes: vegan, sustainably-sourced

Cacao percentage: 48 percent

Well+Good articles reference scientific, reliable, recent, robust studies to back up the information we share. You can trust us along your wellness journey.
  1. Katz, David L et al. “Cocoa and chocolate in human health and disease.” Antioxidants & redox signaling vol. 15,10 (2011): 2779-811. doi:10.1089/ars.2010.3697

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